Wednesday, October 12, 2005

God's Glory

I know I said I wasn't going to be on much for a bit, but I'm giving up my morning nap to relate an INCREDIBLE story.

Yesterday was terrible, just awful! I got back midterm after midterm with nothing to show the amount of work I've been doing. My day started at 5:30 just like every day, and I was off and running non-stop until 10:30 last night. Homework, classes, errands, homework, classes, homework...and it all HAD to be done yesterday. I was in over my head and losing my grip, FAST!!

Joseph had messaged me yesterday morning and we'd kept a running dialog most of the day. By the time I was sitting in my last class of the day, without my homework for that class complete, with an unimpressive midterm grade, and a new LENGTHY homework assignment in my hands I lost it. I was sitting in class willing myself not to shake which in turn forced me into tears. So now I'm trying not to shake and trying not to cry. I sent Joseph a quick message hoping that his encouragement would help. He did respond, but it lacked sincerity. I chalked that evaluation up to my stress level. Class goes on and I was actually getting a lot accomplished (it was a lab). I finished a huge assignment by doing some tricky programing work in excel. It must be noted that I despise LapPro! After I finished I started helping another student who's my mother's age and just doesn't get this whole computer thing. After we gave it a rest we started walking out and actually started talking about God and Christianity and peace and grace and comfort. It was REALLY cool!

I walked passed the Homecoming carnival to my lonely and VERY messy dorm room to finish the homework and e-mail it to my professor. I sent Joseph a final text message around 10:15 to let him know I was finally done with my day and going to bed. At least I thought I was. My dinner selection decided to haunt me, so I didn't fall asleep very quickly (I guess popcorn and Pepsi on an empty and stressed out stomach isn't the best idea--particularly for someone sensitive to caffeine). Now, anyone who knows me knows that I go to bed as close to 9 as I possibly can since I don't sleep well, ever, and I have to get up so early. My phone started vibrating at 10:45 and I figured I was awake so I might as well answer it. It was Joseph. With torn emotions, I answered. At first he was very concerned and did his "it will be okay and you'll get through it just like always and what can I do" routine. At the last comment I laughingly said he could write my thesis for me. He asked what it was about (hello, where have you been?) and I told him Panama. He gave me a very conservative and limited-knowledge two sentence summary of the fact that Panama has a canal. I laughed at his assessment of the situation.

I then launched into an explanation of my thesis from intro through conclusion. I was starting to feel a lot better and more in control of things as I realized I had more of an idea what I was going to write about than I'd previously thought. Just as I was relaxing in this realization, he piped in with his conservative pro-American argument. I tried to point out to him facts that I've come across in my MONTHS of research. This was in vain, of course. I was trying to let go of his ignorant critique of my hard work when he launched into Puerto Rican bashing. Well, that's about all I could take. You're not going to find many Latin American scholars accepting an ignorant commentary laced with such hatred. I decided that explaining some reasons for the things that he was complaining about was a waste of my time and abruptly ended the phone call. I sent him a text message trying to calmly explain why I had gotten upset and to apologize for my rudeness. His messages in return were terribly rude, meanly rude. I called him crying to say that if this is the way he shows his friendship when I needed his support most, I had no interest. He just argued more and argued that he hadn't been arguing and basically said he didn't care what I felt. We basically hung up on each other.

That was it! I curled up in a ball and started uncontrollably crying. My jaw was chattering, I was shaking all over, tears were STREAMING down my face, and I was whimpering as a result of trying to hold back sobs. It was BAD! But, it didn't last all that long. Shortly after I broke down a thought passed through my mind: "forgive him." I suddenly remembered the devotional I'd read that morning about being quick to forgive but careful to not allow abuse to perpetuate. By the time that flash of thought finished, I realized I was laying flat on my back, one leg straight and under the covers, one leg cocked to support the small of my back, my arms comfortably positioned. The shaking and chattering had stopped. My cheeks were wet, but no new tears were flowing. I was calm, peaceful, and comfortable. "Just forgive him, Tina."

I laid there, still, for a LONG time. I don't lay/sit/stand still for any given amount of time. When I finally did move, I rolled over and fell fast asleep.

I cannot describe the incredible power the Lord can have when He rushes in and touches our lives. There is only one explanation for what happened to me last night. I was spiraling downward so fast, so out of control. In one single moment, He came to me and calmed me. Instantaneously. I only got 5.5 hours of sleep last night. I need much more to function, especially after such a long and stressful day. However, today I'm only slightly sleepy. I didn't doze off watching cartoons while babysitting this morning; didn't have the need to take a nap after sitting and before class. I'm almost shaking in pure excitement and disbelief. I can handle anything because at the end of the day, it's not me who is handling it at all.

On my way to babysit, the song I had posted earlier came on the radio, "You'll think of me." I cranked it and listened to the words, again, with new meaning. The following verse jumped out at me:
Someday I'm gonna run across your mind
Don't worry, I'll be fine
I'm gonna be alright
While you're sleeping with your pride
Wishing I could hold you tight
I'll be over you
And on with my life

I'm going to be fine. I'm going to get over him. I was in love with what he represented, not with who he was. I'm working on another poem, perhaps I'll be more proud of this one. I'll post it later, once I've worked it all out.

I hope everyone has a terrific day. I'll be back once I tie up some loose ends and get at least up to date. God bless!


  1. You go Tina!

    Love keeps us together and tears us apart, which is a balance, but not necessily the one we desire.

    I think you found your inner strength. You go for it!

  2. forgiveness is as much about you being able to let go and heal as it is anything else. heal up, girl. glad youofund peace

  3. it's amazing how your spirituality can give you hope and strength...keep hanging in there!

  4. I love what you wrote - "I was in love with what he represented, not with who he was." That was exactly my situation. When I finally realized this fact (not all that long ago) I felt so much better.

    I'm so glad you have such a strong faith and belief in God - it really aids in the forgiveness part.


  5. Hang in there.... There is always more energy in us then we think.

    Anyways, just wanted you to know, you're in my thoughts !

    Cheers !